Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme approves Dh299m in assistance for Emiratis

Funding will cover house building, completion, purchase, maintenance and upgrades

Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme approves housing aid to support Emiratis. Photo: Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure.
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The Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme has approved Dh298.7 million in housing aid to support Emiratis.

“As we welcome the holy month of Ramadan, the month of giving, Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme continues its endeavours to enhance family stability, ensure decent living, and improve the quality of life of UAE citizens,” said Suhail Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure.

The funding includes applications for house construction, completion, purchase, maintenance and upgrades and is part of President Sheikh Mohamed's decision in June last year that all pending applications received by the programme are completed at a cost of Dh2.3 billion.

It was announced at the time that all pending applications for funding assistance would be processed over the next five years.

Mr Al Mazrouei said in June that his ministry would work with the Follow-Up Committee of the Initiatives of the UAE President to carry out the directives within the five-year time frame.

He said the policy was testament to the President's determination to meet the needs of the country's citizens.

In May, the UAE announced plans to support thousands of Emiratis as part of its housing strategy.

Under the government plan, 13,000 Emirati families living in the Northern Emirates will be eligible for interest-free home loans under the government plan.

A total of Dh11.5 billion will be given to families in Sharjah, Ajman, Ras Al Khaimah, Umm Al Quwain and Fujairah in the first phase of the plan, between 2022 and 2026.

Emiratis must submit requests to the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure to obtain housing loans through the Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme.

The programme was established in 1999 and provides interest-free loans repayable over a 25-year period to citizens with low incomes.

Those who most need support are given grants and non-reimbursable assistance.

The Sheikh Zayed Housing Programme gives priority to orphans, widows, aged people and people with special needs.

In July, the Central Bank of the UAE increased the debt burden ratio (DBR) of beneficiaries of housing loans under the programme which allows more borrowers to obtain financing.

The DBR — the ratio of a borrower’s monthly outgoing payments to their total income — was raised to a maximum of 60 per cent from 50 per cent, the banking regulator said in a statement.

Banks were also instructed to increase the DBR for retirees and senior Emiratis to 50 per cent from 30 per cent to help them benefit from SZHP loans, after ascertaining their ability to repay the amount.

Updated: March 27, 2023, 4:24 AM